The project is assessed on the basis of a written final dissertation. Dissertations will typically conform to the following format:
Projects should be assessed in terms of a number of basic and other criteria. These are:
Note that according to the University's marking regulations (see the document Taught Assessment Regulations (PDF), and in particular page 32), a dissertation may be judged satisfactory, as presented and without alteration, despite containing small deficiencies and editorial imperfections.
From October 2012 onwards, it is no longer possible for markers to recommend that marginal fails be resubmitted with minor ammendments. Resubmissions are not permitted unless this has been approved by CSPC on the basis of a case submitted by the College of Science and Engineering. If the Board of Examiners wishes a student to resubmit, a case on the basis of special circumstances needs to be submitted to CSPC as a College-requested concession.
Accordingly, markers should assign projects their marks according to the following criteria:
Note that the 'completion' criterion, B, covers achievement of the original objectives, achievement of modified objectives or providing convincing evidence that the objectives are unachievable. The 'outstanding merit' criterion, K, includes originality and the excellence of engineering.
Many dissertations will not fit nearly into any category, e.g. strong on additional criteria, but weak on a basic one. In this case, you are asked to trade one criterion off against another as best you can, bearing in mind that failure on a basic criterion is a serious fault.
If you are aware of any mitigating factors which should be taken into account, please do not compensate for them in your assessment but mention them in the appropriate section in your report and indicate the degree of compensation you feel would be appropriate. If you feel that the dissertation does not do justice to the work carried our by the candidate, please make this clear in your report together with an explanation. In any case please give reasons for your overall grading.
In the General Comments section, include a little contextual information as to what the thesis is about, in no more than one sentence or two. Supervisors should also note the extent to which the candidate was self-directed or required close supervision. Highlight original contributions by the candidate or novelty in the project. If the project involved extending existing code, try to estimate how much work was put into the researching the pre-existing background.
It is very important that the comments that you write on the mark sheet are sufficiently informative to justify the mark that you have awarded the dissertation.
You are invited to nominate the dissertation for a prize if you think this is appropriate. Making such a nomination here will allow External Examiners to adjudicate between competing projects.
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